The Red List of Trains in Japan

JR East E217 series

The E217 series for Yokosuka Line

Data (as of 6 Jul 2024)

Status:  Critically Endangered 
Constructed in: 1994-99
Number built: 745
Registered: 176

History

The E217 series is the first suburban train type that has four sets of doors per carriage, to ease congestion. At that time, 113 series was being refurbished with longitudinal seating but still incapable of dealing with too many passengers. JR East decided to replace the 113 series with brand new trains that are completely different from other suburban trains. Therefore, the company designed the E217 series based on 209 series. However, some features were based on older trains such as squat toilets.

The E217 series were introduced to Sobu Line (Rapid) and Yokosuka Line, as well as other lines in Chiba Prefecture such as Kashima, Narita, Sotobo and Uchobo Lines. They were also used on Shonan-Shinjuku Line in 2001-04. In addition, a few units were transferred to Tokaido Main Line in 2004 and ran along with E231 series until 2015.

Withdrawal of the E217 series was first planned in the late-2000s, but JR East has decided to replace electric equipment with new one in 2007-12. Following the introduction of E235 series, the E217 series have been declining since 2021.


Current Operations & Future Prospects

The E217 series have been used on Sobu (Rapid) and Yokosuka Lines as well as other lines in Chiba Prefecture aforementioned. They have been declining particularly since 2024. Their conditions are not good as some trainsets have uneven floor, noise of springs and "fragrant" toilets. Timetables of the E217 and the E235 series are separated, as these two types cannot be combined and formed of 15 coaches.


Photos

The E217 series in Shonan Livery, when the series was used for Tokaido Main Line but not Shonan-Shinjuku Line.




(Updated: 6 Jul 2024)



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